Andrew Sullivan to leave Daily Beast, start new company

Wed Jan 2, 2013 4:36pm EST

Jan 2 (Reuters) - Popular political pundit Andrew Sullivan is leaving Tina Brown's Daily Beast to form an independent company for his blog The Dish.

He wrote on Wednesday in a post on the Daily Beast that he decided to leave when his contract was up for negotiation, thanking Brown and Barry Diller, whose IAC/InterActivecorp backs the Daily Beast.

"We felt more and more that getting readers to pay a small amount for content was the only truly solid future for online journalism," Sullivan wrote.

"The only completely clear and transparent way to do this, we concluded, was to become totally independent of other media entities."

Sullivan, who will charge readers $19.99 a year to access his Dish blog beginning in February, is the latest news producer trying to entice readers to pay for online content. The Washington Post, a long time hold-out, is now contemplating charging readers for online content, for example.

Sullivan started his blog, The Dish in 2000, before the space became saturated with voices and commentators. The Dish had partnered with other media companies in the past decade including Time and the Atlantic.

A couple walks along the rough surf during sunset at Oahu's North Shore, December 26, 2013. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

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